Since a very young age, I have loved to sing. I have had many wonderful private instructors throughout my years of lessons. When looking back at the lessons I’ve learned, I realize that the value isn’t just the actual vocal, piano or guitar lessons I’ve learned. It’s the life lessons. Through my years of studying music privately, I have learned goal-setting, perseverance, self-discipline, problem solving, math and reading skills and much more. These lessons are invaluable. Through the MusicLink Foundation, thousands of children have been able to take private lessons. They are creating more than musicians one student at a time. They are creating well-rounded and successful young adults. As a Minnesota MusicLink Ambassador, I am honored to be part of an organization that makes a difference in children’s lives every day. Thank you MusicLink Foundation for letting me be a part of your organization and for being dedicated to enriching the lives of your students.
Every year our professional organization holds a piano contest. My music link students are consistent winners in this contest. These students would not be able to participate without the music link benefits they receive. Many of my Music Link families are living on one income. The help they receive through the Music Link program greatly expands their opportunities for giving back to their community through the gift of music.
In these tough economic times, many families don't have disposable income for music lessons. As a Music Link teacher, I can offer them partial or full scholarships and they feel good about being part of the Music Link family. My best students are my Music Link students. They are very dedicated and appreciative. It's a win-win scenario.
I am the parent of a former student of Joanne Haroutounian, who is a successful pianst because of her. I have watched with pleasure and pride as the MusicLink Foundation has grown and flourished due to her hard work. Joanne is one of my heroes.
A service like no other! Joanne Haroutounian's vision of providing music lessons for gifted and interested students has helped so many young musicians that otherwise would not have had the personal attention needed to develop their gifts! The Promise to Practice campaign inspired my students to practice - in order to help provide lessons for other students. The strength is in the combination of vision, teachers, and music business support. A wonderful cooperative effort!
MusicLink began as a simple idea - link a student who is eager to learn music with a teacher who wants to bring music into this child's life. Who could ever imagine it would grow into a way to reach thousands of students nationwide with this simple 1+1 formula. As founder of the organization, I smile each day when I receive a thank you from a teacher or student who has grown from their experience working in the program. Continuous thanks to our wonderful coordinators, from local to regional levels, who tirelessly work to link every student who seeks lessons with a teacher wishing to "create a musician" through lessons. The real heart of the program - our students, who show how much they love music through their effort, practice, and joy when performing. Music is now a part of their life.
I was funded by Music Link to learn to play the piano. Music link provided a professional piano teacher for me for three years, and the senior year of my high school I applied to multiple music conservatories such as Moravian College, Guilford College, GMU, and even Oberlin College as a music major. I got into all that I applied to. Music Link is such a wonderful program that give kids like me the opportunity to follow their dreams and follow their heart.
When I opened my non-profit music school in 2001, I was searching for a way to engage the disadvantaged community in my musically elitist city of Madison, WI. I was thrilled to discover the MusicLink Foundation's system that fit perfectly into our existing programming. Joanne Haroutounian can take credit for enhancing the lives of so many talented children across the country. And the key word is "talented." How many students do us teachers teach that we know deep down will never really get anywhere in the world of music, but we need the income and so "take the money and run?" Most of them, I'd say. Yet the system of having community leaders identify children who show a special flair for music but do not have the resources to seek out private lessons makes it (for me) completely worthwhile. I love teaching, I love kids and I love teaching kids who are talented. I don't even notice the lack of $. I also love the challenge of finding teachers who are willing to be apart of this amazing program. Sincerely, Jo Simons, Director Community Music School, ltd Madison, WI
I loved teaching with Music Link, think it is a wonderful program and just wish more families knew they could have lessons this way.
I have been involved with MusicLink for 7-8 years as a music teacher and have worked with four students during this time. Recently, I have helped two more children get involved in the program with teachers in my area. If it were not for the Music Link program, none of the these children would be able to afford music lessons. Each of the families has been very grateful for the opportunity and each person I have worked with has worked very hard on the assignments I give them. Through the MusicLink Foundation, we have found a piano on Craig's list for one of the new students. The owner decided to donate it and MusicLink will cover the cost of moving the piano to the student's home. For me, it has been very rewarding to offer lessons to these children. My second music link student graduated from high school and is attending college now. Recently, she was visiting in town and she and I were able to perform a duet during church. She had practiced and played her part beautifully.
I have watched, in wonder, as music student after music student has moved through their lives reframing how they saw themselves as a result of the caring support of MusicLink teachers. Year after year, successful performance after successful performance, these children in need built a strong sense of themselves as disciplined, capable and an important part of the musical community. Most, have gone on to win scholarships to universities and colleges. Often being the first person in their families to ever go to college. MusicLink is about music and a whole lot more!
A year and a half ago I was desperately in search of HELP! I had taken in 3 young relatives only to discover that each one had unique social/developmental issues, and together their issues were compounded as they bounced off each other. Trying to manage them was like trying to organize a sit down dinner on Noah's Ark. Someone familiar with the chaos in our home gave me the contact number for this group. The MusicLink Foundation and the volunteer teachers who gave us lessons have worked a miracle in our lives! Although the children are still a handfull they have developed a level of discipline I never thought I'd see as they compete to show off who can play more of their songs with the fewest errors. Truly music has "..soothed the savage breast." As an added bonus, learning to play an instrument has raised their standing among their classmates at school and given them more confidence in their ability to learn anything else. And recently, when my own son's cello was broken (a loss I sadly could not afford to replace) they came through in the most unexpected and wonderful way for him. Life isn't always fair, but people like this who give of their time and talents to help improve children's experience are a gift. I only hope that someday I will be in a position to contribute toward the continuation of their good works.
The MusicLink program inspired me to offer a scholarship to a young girl who would not otherwise have been able to afford piano lessons. After 4 years in the program she not only plays the piano very well, but has also now added violin and percussion playing. She loves music of all kinds and has developed extreme confidence. I have no doubt that she is a future leader, not only in musical activities, but in life. As an educator, I'm of the opinion that every teacher needs to offer one scholarship at all times. Great things happen to everyone involved as a result.
Bamber Valley Elementary School became familiar with the Music Link Program when a representative from the organization contacted our school. Our school has been participating in this program for two years. We have received excellent feedback on this program from staff, students and parents.
I learned of the MusicLink Foundation at a music EXPO put on by Schmitt Music, in the Minneapolis area. For several years I had wanted to try to teach piano lessons to children from homes who could not afford lessons. But I knew that most did not have access to a piano. Then I met the Minnesota MusicLink representative, and thus began a wonderful chapter in my piano lessons history. I currently teach 15 students, and 6 of them receive lessons from no pay up to half price. Then, they have each received an electric keyboard for a time, which has been replaced by a real piano eventually. If they continue lessons through MusicLink for 4 years, they are allowed to keep the piano. Of all the students I've had over the past several years, they have all worked hard, and the families have been so blessed and appreciative. I, too, have been much blessed. Our Minnesota representative is VERY supportive of everything we do, as is the national organization.